Robert Gordon Bobby Martin, Jr., age 81, a lifelong resident of Pensacola, passed away on Tuesday, December 16, 2003, at a local healthcare facility. Mr. Martin was born on October 6, 1922, in Pensacola, Florida, to Ellen Adair Roberts and Robert Gordon Martin, Sr., a third generation descendent of Ezekiel Ewing Simpson, one of the region’s leaders in the lumber industry. After attending local public schools, graduating from Pensacola High School in 1940, Bobby Martin enrolled at The Citadel, The Military College of South Carolina, where he was called to active Army duty with his full junior class to serve in World War II. As an officer, he became part of the famed 11th Airborne Division, later serving with occupation forces in Japan. Thereafter, he completed his education, graduating with honors. Following graduation Mr. Martin returned to Pensacola, joining his father in what was then a joint operation of the Pensacola Hardware Company and the Pensacola Appliance Company. When the latter firm was separately incorporated, Bobby Martin became its President and General Manager, while also continuing to serve as an official of the successful hardware company. Through his appliance wholesale enterprise Bobby Martin became associated with leaders of several of the nation’s large electrical appliance suppliers, serving with such groups as The President’s Club of The Gibson Company, and as an advisor to others. When he retired from his firm, the company passed to Bobby’s son Robin Martin, continuing its family ownership and management. As a business leader Bobby Martin shared his expertise and experience with numerous organizations. He was appointed by two governors to serve as a trustee of Pensacola Junior College; he was a member of the Baptist Hospital Advisory Board; and he served on the board of the Law Enforcement Ministry, the Navy League and the Pensacola Rotary Club, of which he was a past president and Paul Harris Fellow. He has also been a long time member of the Pensacola Area Chamber of Commerce, and a Director of the YMCA. Throughout his life Bobby has been part of Pensacola’s First Presbyterian Church, as Deacon, Elder, President of the Men’s Bible Class, and budgetary advisor. From his early youth Mr. Martin has loved the game of golf, becoming an outstanding amateur player, the winner of countless tournaments and trophies, and as an outreach of this served as President of The Pensacola Sports Association, by which he was honored in 1974 as Sportsman Of The Year. He also has served as President of the Pensacola Country Club, where he is a five-time champion and the course former record-holder. In 1958, Mr. Martin was invited to membership on the board of what was then The First Bank & Trust Company (which became Barnett Bank and then Bank of America), where he served diligently, loyally and with success in said role, performing with credit on numerous committees and in appropriate special assignments. In 1993, Mr. Martin retired from his role as director. Mr. Martin was preceded in death by his wife Ruby and his grandson Matthew Ryan Martin. Mr. Martin is lovingly remembered by his son, Robert Gordon (Sheila) Martin, III, of Pensacola; his two daughters, Mary Macy (Jeff) Johnson of Birmingham, Alabama, and Nell Ann (Greg) Landsgaard of Pensacola; two sisters, Ann (Scott) Brodie and Ellen (Jim) Coe, both of Gulf Breeze; and seven grandchildren, Robert Gordon Martin, IV, Mary Elizabeth Claire Martin, Jeffrey Alexander Johnson, Macy Elizabeth Johnson, Gregory Esten Landsgaard, Annie Katherine Landsgaard and William Robert Landsgaard. Friends may call on the family 5-7 pm, Thursday, December 18, 2003, at Bayview Fisher-Pou Chapel, 3351 Scenic Highway. A memorial service will take place at 2:00 p.m., Friday, December 19, 2003, at First Presbyterian Church, 33 E. Gregory St., with Revs. Vernon Hunter and Roger Nicholson officiating, followed by military honors. Inurnment will take place at First Presbyterian Church at a later date. Honorary pallbearers will be Bill Noonan, Bill Champlin, Clarence Lamar, John Monroe, Lansing Smith, and Clarence Pape. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Alzheimer’s Research Foundation, Attn: Grants & Contributions, 1236 Ginger Crescent, Virginia Beach, VA 23456, or by credit card by calling toll-free: 877-427-0220; or to the church of your choice. Bayview Fisher-Pou Chapel is in charge of arrangements.
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